World Athletics sets minimum standards for agents


ATHLETICS World Athletics sets minimum standards for agents

Festus Chuma 14:45 - 16.08.2023

The international governing body wants to equip athletes with professional and ethical representation.

World Athletics has announced the launch of a centralised licensing system for Athletes' Representatives, effective from September 1, 2023. 

This momentous development follows the approval of a comprehensive regulatory framework by the World Athletics Council, marking a pivotal step towards streamlining and enhancing the professional standards governing athlete-agent relationships on a global scale.

The innovative system by the international governing body is poised to establish uniformity and raise the bar for Athletes' Representatives across the world.

According to the statement published on World Athletics website, a set of global minimum standards will be enshrined, ensuring that those who seek to act on behalf of athletes meet rigorous criteria. 

"We believe a centralised system which sets minimum professional standards and provides ongoing professional development will lead to a better outcome for both athletes and agents,” said World Athletics president Sebastian Coe.

The transformation entails significant changes for both Athletes' Representatives and Member Federations. 

Notably, Member Federations will no longer wield the power to regulate or impose fees on World Athletics Athletes' Representatives.

However, if Member Federations opt to institute a regulatory framework, it must align with World Athletics' standards.

The licensing process will be underpinned by stringent eligibility criteria, ensuring a high-caliber cadre of representatives.

 Prospective Athletes' Representatives will undergo a vetting and exam process, akin to the one required for World Athletics officials. 

The World Athletics Athletes' Representative Panel will oversee the vetting procedure, enhancing transparency and accountability

The forthcoming AR exam will encompass critical subjects essential for effective sports agency, including ethical compliance and safeguarding

To maintain their license, Athletes' Representatives will be required to pay an annual fee to cover administrative costs, secure professional indemnity insurance, and engage in ongoing professional development.

 This multifaceted approach ensures that representatives remain current in their knowledge and committed to ethical practice.

In line with its commitment to education, World Athletics will introduce an online portal to streamline the licensing process.

 Moreover, it will provide athletes with comprehensive guidance on contractual matters, appropriate payment structures, and insights for emerging athletes aspiring to achieve elite status.

A pivotal facet of the transformation is the imposition of a maximum agreement duration between athletes and Athletes' Representatives, set at two years, with the possibility of extensions. 

Human rights considerations also take center stage in this transformation. As part of its Human Rights Strategy, World Athletics has incorporated human rights considerations into its Safeguarding Essentials E-Learning course

In a sweeping movement towards professionalism, transparency, and athlete welfare, World Athletics' centralised licensing system for Athletes' Representatives and enhanced safeguarding measures herald a new era in sports representation.